Macbeth’s Conscience


Act I Scene 5 in Macbeth where Lady Macbeth tells Macbeth to kill Duncan so he can become higher in power is one of the most dominant scenes in the entire play. Her speech in this scene defies her social role as a Elizabethan woman and demonstrates her robust personality, making her a leading character in the play. Not often in Shakespeare plays does a women instruct a man to do anything, let alone commit murder for the pure intention of power. Lady Macbeth creates tension between the marriage because she is acting out of stereotypical character and switches the gender roles of the male and female. Lady Macbeth’s taunts also shows how Lady Macbeth is comparable a conscience to Macbeth, clearly being on the devious side. Macbeth wants to be king and knows the crime he has to commit to become king, nevertheless he also knows that killing Duncan is morally wrong. Lady Macbeth acts as the demonic side of his conscience telling him to commit the murder and blame the murder on someone else, which gives a thought-provoking contrast to the scene that is not seen in many other Shakespearean plays.


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5 Responses to Macbeth’s Conscience

  1. jillianhaywood says:

    Your last sentence expresses your most illuminating insight in the entire response. It uses the information given in the beginning of the post to characterize Lady Macbeth, her effect on Macbeth, and how her character relates to other Shakespearean plays.

  2. pistolpete42 says:

    In the middle of your analysis the connection between marriage and gender stereotype is very captivating. Limitations on gender were evident in England during the 16th Century which is conveyed through the relationship between Lady Macbeth and the other characters in the play.

  3. psiripakorn says:

    The second sentence of this post embellishes Lady Macbeth’s defying personality in the male-dominated society.

  4. beans11 says:

    With the concluding sentence the post presents a biblical illusion to temptation by the devil related to the work as a whole.

  5. dennysmythe says:

    Sage portrays Lady Macbeth as a very strong women and helps to convey her importance to Macbeth and his decisions as a whole. “Her speech in this scene defies her social role as a Elizabethan woman and demonstrates her robust personality, making her a leading character in the play.”

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